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3 Things In Biotech, April 12: Roche Stumbles, AbbVie Delays, Prescient Glows

Apr. 13, 2018 8:00 AM ETABBV, NBIX, PSTTF, RHHBF6 Comments
Zach Hartman profile picture
Zach Hartman


  • Roche signals a setback in colorectal immunotherapy combo trial.
  • AbbVie and Neurocrine have a pushback from the FDA.
  • Tiny Prescient Therapeutics digs up what it can in breast cancer.

Note: Subscribers to Avisol Capital Partners Total Pharma Tracker got an early look at this publication. Try for free today and see what we're talking about!

Welcome to another edition of "3 Things In Biotech You Should Learn Today," a daily digest dedicated to helping you keep pace with the fast-moving world of pharmaceutical and biotechnology research.

Roche signals a setback in colorectal immunotherapy combo trial

Company: Roche (OTCQX:RHHBF)

Therapy: Atezolizumab

Disease: Colorectal cancer

News: RHHBF has announced that the phase 2 MODUL trial has been halted due to the deaths of four patients. This study includes assessment of the efficacy and safety of atezolizumab combined with the MEK inhibitor cobimetinib for patients with metastatic colorectal cancer after induction therapy with standard chemotherapy. RHHBF guided that two of the deaths were due to disease progression, and another was not related to study treatment. However, one of the deaths was due to cardiogenic shock. Another study, IMblaze370, evaluating this combo in third-line treatment, will continue as planned.

Looking forward: RHHBF has more often been on the tangential end of punishment from the FDA when these kinds of events have occurred. Most notably this occurred when trials with pembrolizumab in myeloma were suspended, but those suspensions were lifted in the case of atezolizumab. It's difficult to know what the outcome of this particular hold will be, since the situation of these patients may not be dire enough to warrant increased risk of toxicity, if indeed it is found to be the combo that is at fault.

For now, this is not great news for RHHBF, which continues to try and make a unique mark on different treatment spaces.

AbbVie and Neurocrine have a pushback from the FDA

Company: AbbVie (ABBV) and Neurocrine Biosciences (NBIX)

Therapy: Elagolix

Disease: Endometriosis

News: ABBV and NBIX

This article was written by

Zach Hartman profile picture
I am a former PhD scientist-turned-writer focused on cancer education. My writings in Seeking Alpha have been devoted to helping people identify promising investment opportunities in cancer research through commentary of recent events. Readers can learn more about other aspects of cancer research by visiting my site Invest Against Cancer.I also collaborate with Avisol Capital Partners on their Marketplace service known as the Total Pharma Tracker (TPT). Some of my work will be available to TPT subscribers either exclusively, or in advance. If you are interested, please click the link above!

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Comments (6)

13 Apr. 2018
13 Apr. 2018
It’s a Cannabis sector stock as well
Is Abbvie in trouble? Just recently got in and have been reading a lot of bad press. They still have juice in the tank right?
Zach Hartman profile picture
In my opinion, they're nowhere near from done. Rheumatology prospects on deck. Oncology business going gangbusters.
sbrncra profile picture
The big guys fail, but not often due to
More data and possibly the help of lobbyist...it is always a good idea to collaborate with big pharma
Ceeport Capital profile picture
Long ABBV.
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